Monday, September 29, 2014

The Theocracy of the Ayatollahs of the Progressive Dinner Party.

Atheists often post about the specter of Christian repression, while ignoring where the real intolerance is coming from in modern society.

Indeed, the most troubling issue in this case is not Schneider’s views on vaccinations; it is the response from his opponents. Rather than argue against his position, this vocal minority has called for Schneider to be cast out for his heretical views. As with many other recent cases where a celebrity figure breaks from the ‘progressive dinner-party position’ (think of former Mozilla boss Brendan Eich’s opposition to gay marriage), this intolerant reaction is far more concerning than the supposedly abhorrent views being attacked.

Rather than face the anti-vaccination brigade head-on, with vigorous arguments making a reasoned case for vaccinations, this loud and intolerant mob have demanded Schneider’s image be removed from our TV screens for fear that even a glimpse of him may convince the masses that the US government is trying to poison us all with autism-laced flu jabs. It is this infantilising and patronising outlook that is creating a situation in which debate is painted as something to be feared, and scientifically determined ‘truth’ cannot be questioned.

Now more than ever, as more and more ideas are marked as ‘off the table’ and dissident ideas are casually silenced, we need to reinvigorate public debate. This will, of course, mean that quackery and nonsensical ideas will get an airing, but this will also provide a platform in which these ideas can be challenged and confronted. The last thing we need today is to inoculate ourselves from the free exchange of ideas.//


5 comments:

Anonymous said...


I know. Call them "elites." Compare them to the theocracy in Iran. Or just go straight for the jugular and raise them to the lofty status of Nazis (Hitler works just as well). See previous blog posts on Lex Communis for instructions and empirical guidance.

Apparently, its just acting when conservatives are intolerant, but only liberals actually are intolerant.

Just a thought, maybe people who live in the middle ages and refuse to have their children vaccinated need to sometimes (not always) be told in no uncertain terms that they are idiots. Same as how democrats sometimes need to be told how stupid President Obama is (see previous blog post).

P.S. Liberals actually are intolerant, mostly at their progressive dinner parties. Conservatives generally reserve their "sham intolerance" for compassionate conservative value-based prayer breakfasts and luncheon barbecues at the Koch brothers ranch. Love to see the menus for all three. Perhaps the best meal would incorporate the best of each? A little national socialism with your healthcare program?

Peter Bradley said...

Do you ever read the linked information?

You seem to have a reflex where when the dysfunction of liberalism you spew forth red herrings of grudges that you've been nursing.

You are kind of boring and are about one step from getting blocked.

Once again, would you like to address the column?

Do you agree with the drive of modern leftists to suppress speech by attacking and vilifying rather than addressing the substance of the issues raised?

Which, come to think of it, is all you are doing with these comments.

You get one more chance.

Make it count.

Anonymous said...

Let's see if I can make it count.

I do not agree that what you describe as "a drive to suppress speech by attacking and vilifying rather than addressing the substance of the issues raised" is anywhere close to being unique to modern leftists. I can't help but be extremely sarcastic when I encounter Internet headlines comparing Iranian theocracy to progressive dinner parties. There are plenty of observers and elites from the entire political spectrum who attack and vilify. I object to such categorizations as ending discussion before it begins. I welcome a discussion of whether progressive principals and approaches are right or wrong.

Its also odd, from a centrist's perspective, to equate the label "leftist" with "progressive." From my position on the political spectrum, a leftist is kinda like a Marxist-Leninist. The opposite of a leftist in my internal model would be . . . maybe a national socialist? The far right and far left kinda meet out there somewhere in the lunatic fringe. A progressive is someone noticeability left of center who places a great deal of responsibility on government to ensure jobs, and social justice, and an economic safety net. Your conflation of the leftist and progressive labels and the headline of this particular post makes it seem (to me) like you consider anyone left of you politically as some sort of political theocrat promoting Cuban communism at patchouli soaked pot lucks. Most progressives I know are intelligent well meaning individuals who's ideas sometimes have merit and sometimes don't; just like the conservatives I know.

I fail to see how you don't sometimes see your own language (e.g. "The Theocracy of the Ayatollahs of the Progressive Dinner Party") as perhaps being a tad bit attacking and vilifying rather than addressing the substance of the issues raised.

Sorry (truly) if my previous posts have been or have sounded snarky. I be more diligent to limit that. I can't help but sound stupid sometimes, so I can't apologize for that. I enjoy your blog, but can't resist trying to move you a little bit to the left sometimes and little more tolerant sounding of your those with different views. I promise I'm not a theocrat, even if I think making sure everyone in the U.S. has access to quality healthcare is a good idea or that more adventures in Iraq is a bad idea.

Peter Bradley said...

//I do not agree that what you describe as "a drive to suppress speech by attacking and vilifying rather than addressing the substance of the issues raised" is anywhere close to being unique to modern leftists.//

I never said it was "unique," but it is clear that with the left in control of the culture, the left has lost its support for free speech.

in short, again, you are deflecting away from the argument by raising strawmen.

// I can't help but be extremely sarcastic when I encounter Internet headlines comparing Iranian theocracy to progressive dinner parties.//

I can't help you with your obtuse reaction to something we humans call "humor."

Here's a hint: you can tell it is humor because of the juxtaposition of such contrasting ideas as "ayatollah" and "tea dinner parties."

I understand that when the left calls the Tea Party or Foxnews fascists they are completely without humor, but things are different outside the leftwing feverswamp.

You aren't helping your case for taking you as a credible person.

// There are plenty of observers and elites from the entire political spectrum who attack and vilify.//

And we are talking about one in particular, which you don't want to discuss...obviously.

//I object to such categorizations as ending discussion before it begins. I welcome a discussion of whether progressive principals and approaches are right or wrong. //

I wait for you to address the substance of the post, rather than dwelling on a witty and intentionally provocative headline.

etc, etc.

This has been your entire contribution in the comments. You ignore the facts in the post and go after what you consider to be its tone.

Of course, you misunderstand the tone because...wait for it...you are projecting leftist narrow mindedness out on the world.

This is the problem with the left. It has become an echo chamber that has no interest in communicating with the "Other" except by way of alleging strawmen arguments.

Peter Bradley said...

This bears a special comment -

//Its also odd, from a centrist's perspective, to equate the label "leftist" with "progressive.//

What rock have you been living under for the last 50 years.

Leftists have been appropriating the "progressive" label since Wallace ran for President. Perhaps you heard about that? It was in the papers.

There was a magazine that was called "The Progressive." It was published by the same people who published Mother Jones.

The tendency to obfuscate and confuse by using a plethora of fronts, including distancing oneself from a title whose provenance has been tainted, is a common trope of the left.

I say that as a matter of historical fact, not polemics, e.g., liberal, leftist, progressive, to name a few.

Here is the link to The Progressive. Take your complaint up with them.

http://www.progressive.org/about

 
Who links to me?